Confessions of the Bookstore Clerks: We Hate What You Read

In our never-ending quest for the unvarnished truth about literature (and all that entails) in Brooklyn, we decided to go straight to the source: the people actually selling us the books. As some of the book world’s most important gatekeepers, we looked to some of Brooklyn’s finest bookstore staff for an honest take on the good, the bad, and the unstoppable Fifty Shades of Grey juggernaut, and they didn’t hold back. Yes, they talk about cats, and no, you shouldn’t worry (too much) that they’re judging your purchases.

Illustrations Joseph Kaplan


  1. Ugh, this condescension is the exact reason why people do not feel comfortable shopping at independent bookstores. Is this interview a joke? This makes me not want to shop at BookCourt ever again. I should print this out and show it to the owner the next time I’m up on Court Street. Is this the attitude he/she wants from their booksellers, honestly? BookCourt *sells* Pema Chodron and there is nothing wrong with her books. She writes about mindfulness and loving kindness based on the lineage of Tibetan Buddhism. People gain something from reading these books. Get over yourselves.

  2. Jessica, I was the person interviewed from BookCourt, and I apologize for the Pema Chodron comment. When I was interviewed, it seemed clear that the conceit of this article was meant to be a satirical dish on customers–nothing to be taken remotely seriously. Perhaps excluding me, everyone on the staff here is extremely kind and talented. Please don’t boycott BookCourt simply because you think I’m an idiot.

  3. Dodgers right-hander Chad Billingsley will undergo Tommy John surgery on his right elbow Wednesday and will be sidelined for 12 months, the club announced Tuesday.
    Dr. Neal ElAttrache will perform the operation at Kerlan-Jobe Orthopedic Clinic in Los Angeles.
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